Saturday, October 29, 2016

Priorities in Public Service

I was debating where this should go -- in my free-is-not-free blog or my fantasy economics blog.

(Almost) nobody reads them anyway, but I decided it matters most in the political context right now.

When I was growing up, many of the sermons at church seemed to be borrowed from self-improvement seminars for businessmen. I suppose that's the best way to describe them here -- pep talks, attempts at applying gospel principles to the real-world.

Two recurring metaphors were

I can sleep when it rains.


I don't really know how close to the edge I can drive. I stay as far from the edge as I can.

Let's put those into the context where they were usually given, in ostensibly successful employment interviews.

The first was the response of a farm hand when asked his selling point, I suppose. You know the question, "Why should I hire you?"

The second was the response of a stagecoach driver asked how close he could drive to the edge of a cliff in a group interview, when the other candidates were bragging about their skills in driving in narrow mountain passes.

Both of these are about priorities, ostensibly conservative priorities.

I always wondered what the driver who stayed as far from the edge as he could did when the road was too narrow to pass without driving close to the edge. We don't know from that response where he decides to turn back, and where he decides to move forward, and where he decides to stop, let the passengers out, clear a wider track, if possible, etc. But at least we know he thinks he is cautious.

In the case of the farm hand, we don't know what his priorities are in a storm, but we are fairly sure he has confidence in his priorities when it's time to secure the barn.

We don't know the details until we work with a person for a while. That's the way life is.

And it's the same with presidents of countries.

Which is why their power should be limited -- so limited that there really shouldn't be any reason for the campaign excesses we are seeing.

It's the same with every elected official, really. Congresscritters should not have the power that attracts the extremes of lobbying that we are seeing.

And it's the same with corporate management. Corporations should not be as powerful as they are, and when they go to the kinds of excesses that we are seeing in every industry, we should be able to refuse to do business with them until they back down or quit.

We should be able to seek more responsible corporate management by choosing other companies to do business with.

We need more power to fire, or at least re-assign our leaders and managers.

That we have to say this kind of thing should be telling us that we are allowing our experiment in a government that recognizes the freedom and sovereignty of the citizens is failing.

Our great and noble experiment in freedom is failing, and we are allowing our attention to be distracted by the two "major" candidates for the job of president of the country. And both of these candidates have demonstrated that their priorities are not in letting the national experiment in freedom continue to succeed.

It's time for millions of voters in every state to vote protest votes -- anybody but the two candidates that are being forced on us.

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